Iceland, A Trip Around The Ring Road
So, we are going to have to split this Iceland trip into two blog posts because the whole county was just so photogenic, there’s no way that I would be able to put all of these images into one post.
For those of you who do not know, my dear friend, Candace from Candace Nicole Photography, and I went to Iceland at the beginning of the month! We flew over night on a Monday to arrive in the capitol Tuesday morning. There isn’t a city there that I can pronounce, so if you feel like you are reading just a bunch of jumbled letters, you’re not alone on that one! Candace and I tried our hardest to read names the correct way but I’m pretty sure we failed miserably each and every time.
As soon as we hopped off the plane, we got our rental car (and home for the next ten days) and hit the road! Our first stop was the Blue Lagoon. We were supposed to make an actual stop at this spa right before we left to come home, but we had a change of plans which we will talk about in Part 2.
So for this stop, we just got out and walked around the trail that led us in a loop around the lagoon. The blue color of the water was amazing! Especially against the black lava rock… I mean… STUNNING! The geothermal water originates 2,000 meters below the surface, where freshwater and seawater combine at extreme temperatures. It is then harnessed via drilling holes at a nearby geothermal power plant, Svartsengi, to create electricity and hot water for nearby communities. On its way to the surface, the water picks up silica and minerals. When the water emerges, its temperature is generally between 98-104°F. The geothermal water is made up of three active ingredients – silica, algae and minerals. The blue color comes from the silica and the way it reflects sunlight. During summer there can also be a hint of green in the water. This is the result of the algae, which multiplies quickly when exposed to direct sunlight. However, and this might come as a surprise to you, the water is actually white. If you pour it into a transparent cup, it will always have a milky white color. The sun simply makes it look blue!
Next, we went to Hallgrímskirkja, which is a parish church in the capital of Iceland – Reykjavik. It’s the largest church in Iceland and almost the tallest structure in the country! It stands at 244 feet! It totally gave me the Star Wars vibe. I felt like I was in some sort of space galaxy world. And I like it. We even took the elevator to the top and got to see the city from a birds eye point of view! From here, we started our trek around the Ring Road! The main highway – if you can call it a highway – around Iceland actually takes you around the coastline of the entire country. That’s why people call it the Ring Road!
This is where we start to count waterfalls – we counted almost 600 waterfalls! I’m not even kidding or over exaggerating. It was insane – they were everywhere! Also, this is where Tony comes into play. Tony only has a certain amount of vacation days that he can use with the electrical company that he works for, so he was super bummed that he wasn’t able to make this trip. Plus, this was more so a girls trip and we were sleeping out of the car so it would have really been impossible for Tony to make this trip even if he had the vacation days! HOWEVER, that wasn’t going to stop me from including him in some portraits with me while I was there. I had a cardboard cutout made of him so I could carry him around the country! He may not have been able to experience Iceland this time, but we got some pictures of him there! We were entertaining EVERYONE that we passed with Cardboard Tony. They thought he was some mystery man. It was hilarious!
We ended the day at this amazing hot spring which funneled down into a pool! The hot spring was super hot – it kinda made me light headed and super sweaty. Also made my feet feel like they were burning off because they were so cold before I stepped into the spring! But the pool was a little cooler and it was a place that you could stay in MUCH longer and not feel like you’re boiling yourself. It was great to take a “bath” to get us to our next destination!
Look at these super amazing Icelandic turf houses! Apparently, they created turf houses because of how difficult the climate is. It offers better insulation compared to buildings made of wood or stone!
Click Part 2 of our Iceland trip to see more of our journey!